I've been to hundreds of meetings. Some you nail right out of the park and then there are others that don't go as well. First impressions do count-down to the very last detail and after a lot of trial and error, I wanted to share my tips on how to nail your next big meeting! Whether it's your first time meeting with a client you've been dreaming of working together or a quick pow-wow meeting with those you already work with, these essentials will not only make your life easier but the lives of others around you as well. So without further ado, let's get started with my two cents' worth of my top 5 main suggestions for landing your next gig/client.
1. BE ON TIME
Nothing irks me more than those who are regularly late. Biggest pet peeve. Sure, in a city like New York and with all the congested traffic, running 5-10 minutes late is a norm but anything longer than that is just rude and unaccountable. It tells two tale-telling signs (to me): One, you don't take the meeting very seriously if you show up that late and two, it also shows me that you are not reliable (or even worse, irresponsible). So the next best thing for everyone? Just show up a few minutes earlier. If you have to set your alarm fifteen minutes earlier than usual, do it because it'll also save you the hassle of rushing as well, where that's when everyone makes the most mistakes.
2. DO YOUR RESEARCH
I can't tell you how many times I went into a meeting and the person did not do their homework, let alone, know anything about me and/or what I could bring to the table. Eeeek! Don't be that person. If it's more than one person meeting with you, you better research everyone in the room. We're not talking a background check, but yes, know their position and abilities before talking smack about what you can do for them. Demonstrate your preparation by asking questions about the person(s) and not so much about yourself - don't worry they will be asking about you too but don't forget the give and take rule. Listen first, speak later.
3. BE UPFRONT
Now, this doesn't mean opening up your "Dear, Diary" and spilling the 411 on your entire life story, let alone anything super personal. What I mean is don't be afraid to answer with conviction about your skills and knowledge. It doesn't have to be a novella of an answer, but one with a couple short sentences wrapping up your talents with a nice 'bow' if you will. It also doesn't look like you're trying too hard, because who wants to listen to your lists of accomplishments (that you probably memorized off your resume) Keep it short and sweet but with purpose.
4. BE PRESENTABLE
Both physically and mentally. Being present is key along with a first good impression by the way you dress and yes present yourself. Polish those shoes, wear that tie/dress that hugs your hips and makes you feel extra confident but remaining true to you. Obviously, don't show up looking like you're ready to perform in a risque cabaret, but dress the part. The second part is all mental. This has to do with body language, leaving your phone in your bag, to even that initial handshake. They all count. Being present in the moment during a meeting goes a long way, and shows that you're invested and committed to that meeting, and in turn, the job at hand.
5. FOLLOW UP SOONER RATHER THAN LATER
Once you've worked your angles and made your impression to the client, the next best thing is to touch-base rather quickly. Now you don't want to look overly desperate so waiting a day or two is fine, but in this day and age where we are constantly on the go, meeting with other potential clients, and then some, it's easy to forget people and things once too much time has passed. So be diligent and follow through with an email or phone call, thanking them for their time with some sort of continuing conversation regarding your meeting.
Have any questions regarding this post? Well... then GO FOR IT! Drop me a line in the comments section down below or send me an email! We love engaging with our readers and are always down to continue the conversation. Last piece of advice? If you want something badly enough, first and foremost, you have to go for it. Be audacious. Others will know through your actions and words if you really are dedicated in achieving something, whatever it may be. Until next time...